Julie & Julia(2009)
My dinner yesterday was – a plate of golgappa, a smooth glass of mango shake, a little fried chicken warmed to room temperature and a bag of potato chips. At times like these, I just wish I had a splendid kitchen and cookery skills to go with it.
A dinner catharsis follows.
For one, I hate it when I bite into sugar when I am expecting little mango islands in a seemingly smooth mango shake. A golgappa is a cute, small, hollow ball of finely milled wheat flour fried golden brown, which is deftly cracked with the thumb by the chat-walla to make room for a smaller ball of mashed-potatoes, peas, black chickpea. Before serving it, the golgappa is filled with the spiced water. As the thin fragile walls of the golgappa break against the walls of your mouth, you hear the soulful crunch and your taste buds bow in awe. But this was not to be. There was hardly any salt in the filler to speak of and the spicy water lacked the spice.
“Julie & Julia” is a firm push in that direction. Towards my dream of a modern kitchen outfitted with stainless steel utensils and a BOSE sound system. And wooden flooring, maybe.
Julie Powell (Amy Adams) plays a soon-to-be 30 yr old housewife who lives with her patient husband, answering questions about insurance of the 9/11 victims at the Lower Manhattan Development corporation’s call center by day. Together, the couple make just enough to live in a rented place above a pizzeria. The movie follows Julie as she goes through Julia Child’s cookbook – Mastering the Art of French Cooking, cooking 524 recipes in 365 days and blogging about it. As Julie progresses through the cookbook, a child-less Julia Child(Meryl Streep) turns her attention from boring bridge lessons to cooking.
We soon learn that Julia is a natural cook and that Paul Child (Stanley Stucci) has the patience of an ox on an Indian road, even when his wife in the most competitive of moods chops up mounds of onions leaving him ‘crying’ at the door. He doesn’t have it in him to leave the house as Eric Powell (Chris Messina) does, when Julia goes single mindedly after the challenge. Or maybe, Nora (Ephron, director), in her goodness, reduces the burden on the shoulders of a short man married to a taller woman. Soon, Julia’s blog wins her the attention of an array of editors and journalists – hence, 65 voice messages and sex follow. Oh! no twists here, Eric had returned a little while back in the movie. I ponder over how a couple barely able to scrape through the month manages to buys those exquisite groceries, year long.
This is a family movie, not short on entertainment value slowed only by the eloquent French pronunciation (I blame Meryl Streep) and men who are single mindedly devoted to their wives.
Julia writes a book and gets her first published copy at the end of it. And so does Julie, who gets published and famous. Now that I’ve blogged too, do I get the kitchen with the wooden flooring and the Veneta Cucine modular cooking area?
P.S: Gracious reader, would you, if you could, throw in an industrious full-time cook as well?